Egyptians are rediscovering themselves

Egyptians are rediscovering themselves

Although we are constantly afraid, the fight for survival is stronger than fear. Or is it the other way around? Do we survive because of our fears, or in spite of our fears? It’s a soul-searching time for most Egyptians. In times of great confusion, everyone is uncomfortable. The lack of clarity spells out lack of ability to control, and that means our fears take over: fear of the unknown, fear of the unplanned and fear of the jump in the dark.

Because we must survive, we keep fighting our fears. We go on searching for the light. There is no going back, there is only going forward: maybe some zigzagging, maybe some hurdles to cross, maybe some stops to catch our breath, yet mainly moving on. There are even some logical reasons for that direction Egyptians are moving in. First, they have been brewing for very long like a pressure cooker with the lid about to burst open; second, because the present creates the future, never the past; and third, because the young have their lives ahead of them, and they failed to inherit enough of the shackles that crippled and burdened many of their parents’ and grandparents’ generations. Egypt is changing from a country of the old to a country of the young.

It is certainly very uncomfortable to be in confusion, yet we surely remember what level of comfort or discomfort we were at. Some claim there is no change; everything is as it is, they say with disappointment. Others can easily point out disruptive change, and few keep trying to discern as many sides of the picture as possible. It is humans who give change to its value. But is it change for the better or the worse? Change is a life process and a continuum; nothing stops change in life, yet we only stop to acknowledge significant change. It’s the bright big station on the journey that might change directions. We are there now.

Egyptians are rediscovering themselves. There seems to be certainly many more questions than answers, many more problems than solutions, many more fears than comforts. It’s the disruption at that station that is mostly disturbing. The irony of life is that disruption is necessary to change directions consciously, the stop was necessary to decide to get off, get on, choose your role, explore your options, make a decision and bear the consequence. Egyptians are busy doing all of that, knowingly or not. Not only are many more Egyptians involved, many have already decided they can and will make a difference. Brilliant initiatives are springing out everywhere to move onward. Efforts to undermine it all are similarly exerted.

Needless to say, there are grave indications of setbacks, severe emotional and practical challenges and undeniable fears of derailing. All Egyptians certainly do not agree on much these days. A big change from a silent marginalized majority and a mainstream agreed to everything and the growing few who had begun their dissent. Can we just momentarily keep our fears at bay and observe the major shift? Can we numb our fears and awaken our senses for a change? There have been many surprises, and many more I think have yet to come.